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eight winds...

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eight winds...

Postby Guo Gu on Tue Apr 16, 2013 5:21 pm

there's a wonderful song dynasty story about su dongpo, a famous poet and artist, and chan master foyin. su was also a chan practitioner and have many friends in the chan world, both monks and lay. one of his closest friends was master foyin. but su always wanted to out do foyin. for example, one day both of them were sitting:

su, sitting upright in a dignified fashion, ask foyin, "look at me sitting here, what do you see?"
foyin says, "a buddha!"
foyin asked, "what do i look like to you?"
su laughed, "a pile of cow dung."
foyin just smiled, with joined palm...

su went home and was quite proud and said to his sister, "today i finally got foyin" and related the whole story. his sister laughed, "you're pathetic! in foyin's mind there are only buddhas; whereas in your mind, all you see are cow dung!"

one day su actually entered samadhi in meditation. when he came out of it, he wrote a poem to foyin:

pay obeisance to heaven beyond heavens
[where] fine radiance illuminates the great chiliocosm
unmoved by the eight winds
i sit on the purple golden lotus flower.
稽首天中天,毫光照大千,八風吹不動,端坐紫金蓮。

su had a messenger bring the poem to foyin across the river. he thought that he would get some praise from foyin. instead foyin, being playful, wrote on the poem: "fart!" (放屁)

su was furious.... he immediately set out to see foyin. little did he know, foyin has already gone out of the temple. but he left a note on the front gate:

"the eight winds are unable to move him, but a single fart can bring him across the river!"
八風吹不動,一屁打過江。

when su saw that note on the gate, he felt ashamed....

hope you all have enjoyed this little story. the eight winds are the conditions that show us our own self-attachment: gain and loss; fame and defamation; praise and ridicule; joy and sorrow--i.e., opportunities to practice.

be well,
guo gu
Last edited by Guo Gu on Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Carol on Tue Apr 16, 2013 5:23 pm

I LOVE that story!
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Chrisd on Tue Apr 16, 2013 5:31 pm

:lol2:
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Re: eight winds...

Postby desert_woodworker on Tue Apr 16, 2013 6:43 pm

Guo Gu,

I remember Shih fu saying: "Farting, farting, farting!",

...which REALLY blew us all away. ;-)

And, Guo Gu: thanks for adding a NINTH wind: great, grateful, Laughter!

(which is not so much a practice, as a result. But I note that in current-day India, there are Laughing CLUBS, for Laughter-Yoga; a good purification practice)

--Joe

PS (My hearing of the story was through Shih fu's earlier translator, Wang Ming Yee; and maybe Shih fu told it differently, then: pretty emphatic!).
Last edited by desert_woodworker on Tue Apr 16, 2013 11:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: eight winds...

Postby So-on Mann on Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:27 pm

Funny, I was just thinking of that story last night! ;)
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Re: eight winds...

Postby littletsu on Tue Apr 16, 2013 10:18 pm

This reminds me of another story where a master insults some high official as explanation of "black hell",
and thus his own anger brings him the understanding.
Could this be a pattern of teaching?
Unfortunately I don't remember the names and details...anyone?
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Guo Gu on Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:00 am

littletsu wrote:This reminds me of another story where a master insults some high official as explanation of "black hell",
and thus his own anger brings him the understanding.
Could this be a pattern of teaching?
Unfortunately I don't remember the names and details...anyone?
:Namaste:


yes, i believe it was hakuin.
a samuri asked him "is there heaven and hell?" (but not really interested in knowing the answer).
hakuin said to him, "who are you?"
"i'm a samuri" he retorted.
hakuin said, "what? even an idiot like you can be a samuri?"
this got the samuri furious.
being a samuri, he could cut off the head of hakuin.
seeing him in rage, hakuin smiled and said, "there's hell!"
when the samuri realized his fault and suddenly threw down his sword. joined his palm. dropped to his knees and bowed.
the master then said, "there's heaven."

another wonderful story!

the truth is, the winds are everywhere and heaven or hell are all around us. it's us who are unwilling to learn.
what we cannot let go of is our obstacle. :O:

be well,
guo gu
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Gregory Wonderwheel on Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:39 am

I love that story, and especially the part where it is his sister who gets it when he doesn't.

Thanks.

_/|\_
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Guo Gu on Thu Apr 18, 2013 1:00 am

hi gregory,
yes. isn't it wonderful? maybe the sister got it because she's wasn't really involved--her sense of self is not threatened.
su dongpo couldn't see because he was wrapped up with self. he thought foyin's word, "fart!" was criticizing him.
when one is moved by the eight winds--when one's wrapped up with the self-attachment, one can't see...
be well,
guo gu
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Gregory Wonderwheel on Fri Jun 14, 2013 8:35 pm

Another story teller's version.

Why you do not understand is because the three carts were provisional for former times, and because the One Vehicle is true for the present time. ~ Zen Master 6th Ancestor Huineng
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Guo Gu on Wed Jul 17, 2013 8:05 pm

nice. animating, too. thanks for posting that video!

much to learn from this story. the eight winds: gain and loss; fame and defamation; praise and ridicule; and joy and sorrow. they're everywhere, yet nowhere. although i must say, for most ppl, they're everywhere because their self-reference attachment is so strong... practitioners should take heed. in daily life, are we blown here or there by these eight winds or not.
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Guo Gu on Wed Jul 17, 2013 8:26 pm

another story told by the same person... when self-reference is present, everything seems like a great wind! :lol2:

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Re: eight winds...

Postby fukasetsu on Thu Jul 18, 2013 1:53 am

Guo Gu wrote: because their self-reference attachment is so strong... practitioners should take heed. in daily life, are we blown here or there by these eight winds or not.


Where self-reference is strong, vexations by defo flourish.
With "take heed" I suppose you advice to observe and investigate instead of trying to reject it from happening?
[or seek it out ofcourse]
When vexations arise one can observe how it arises and liberates itself into its own condition.
Instead of following/grasping the first thought/vexation and building layer upon layers of it.
What I found beneficial in the past is to acknowledge, "sure I can let it arise and dissolve without any effort on my (minds) part, yet the sense of a personality or self-reference/attachment remains.
That "in between" acknowledgement seems to help in daily life when being confronted by whatever wind,
for if there's the honest acknowledgment that this self-reference is of one's own making,
by which we also acknowledge that due to our own created self-references we also perceive the "other"
- the this vs that person we lock up in a mental picture is also of our own self-attached creation.
The eight winds become a habitual tendency of mind, upon investigation it is clear that the sense of a personality comes into being due to ID'ing the past into the present and projecting it into the futre, which ofcourse is dependent on memory association and attching the "me and mine" to one's memory.
So acknowledging that vexations and perceptions about so called others are of our own (minds) creation, actually helps investigating and observing the first arising (a thought/vexation) and seeing them dissolve,
Clearly without the sense of a personality vexations do not arise in the first place, or if merely old habitual reoccurances, the attachment toward it is not present, thus it liberates itself into its own condition.
I have found the investigation on how a personality comes into being most beneficial, instead of gaining habitual knowledge and entertain the thought that it is something attainable or preventable which only amplifies the self-attachment, (or notion being anything in particular) watching vexations arise and seeing them liberate into its own condition is actually the door to investigation the sense of self/personality,
when the sense of a self/personality is already there and vexations arise, it's basically too late already and one gets entangled into the contents of mind. In other words those or that in the past who actually vexated me and realizing it's not "them" but "they" are there due to the "me and mine" are a blessing for it stops finger pointing and turns the investigation directly upon one's own mind without getting caught up in the contents.
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Guo Gu on Sat Jul 20, 2013 6:02 pm

two things:

1) self-reference is subtle, and not perceivable. what (vexation) one is able to observe, and then allow it to liberate themselves in its own accord, is already very very coarse forms of attachment/deluded thinking (or it's like the tip of an iceberg). this is why, as you say, that you still feel that a sense of self remains.

recognizing vexation when it arises and allowing it to vanish is like a thief who has already emptied one's house and left, and then one arrives to the scene and saying, "well, i didn't want my wealth anyway" :)

still, this is better than not recognizing vexations at all. recognizing that we've been blown here or there is better than not. and definitely better than fooling oneself by convincing oneself that "vexations are bodhi, bodhi is vexations" or "i don't see duality." these are words of those who are fully enlightened only.

2) honesty, being honest to oneself in recognizing where one's at (along with diligent practice), has a direct impact on the subtle sense of self-reference. one will have humility and gratitude.

be well,
guo gu
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Re: eight winds...

Postby fukasetsu on Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:46 am

Anirukta wrote:And how is one going about the recognizing where one's at?

This is where teachers come in handy, for yourself you can in a conventional 'gradual way' apply a trip down to memory lane [if you wish to do so, i.e. determine progress]
In my early teen years I was 'diagnosed' with social anxiety disorder and agoraphobia.
Due to diligent 'practise' they are completely dissolved, and everyone told me it couldn't be done.
But what do they know of Chan. Now it seems like a vague dream, in reality nothing [of this condition] has ever arised nor dissolved, such is my view, let anyone ridicule it or assert it, it makes no difference.
But to take a trip down to the dreamish memory lane, if such a severe condition is not dissolved due to a direct insight into "not-self" and a direct "fruit" of practise, there must be some sky-Buddha who by a transient God's will, altered this dream. Much thanks :lol2:

are there milestones?

Moral of the story from me is, if one keeps milestones, progress, signs,expectations etc in mind.
Two things can happen, the mind can project it and the delusion of it "actually being so" can happen,
or one can make it artificially so, both things have applied to me in the past [and perhaps still happen and I'm unaware of it]
But everyone tastes the fruit of practise soon enough, for actual "stages" of realisation, as said,
I leave that to the teachers and practisioners (neither official teachers or students) who've been there already.


Is there a supernatural power to manifest

See above ;)

is one's hair to turn green or violet?

:lol2:
Green hair is defo one of the 33 characteristics of a Buddha :PP:
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Re: eight winds...

Postby fukasetsu on Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:53 am

Guo Gu wrote: 1) self-reference is subtle, and not perceivable.


Could you clarify;
With not perceivable you mean not perceivable or conceiveable by mind/consciousness, right? In examplus, just as a fingertip cannot touch itself.
The very act of perceiving shows you are not what you perceive,
so everything perceivable or conceivable is always “not-self” or void of self nature.

Due to this recognition one gets to the first step and when vexations arises (I mean serious stuff, not petty stuff like anger, gain and loss, praise and blame) allowing it to liberate is not due to applying some trained method but due to “experience/recognition/insight” that conditioned phenomena are void (of self).
There is no "my vexation" or "that caused this" stuff!
I’m referring to [memory lane] the progress of “self vs other” becoming more subtle or perhaps to say “gradually dissolving” instead of anything “sudden”.
When the insights (applying it 24/7 + practise) mature there comes a point where vexations no longer arise. Does the subtle sense of self still linger, probably, though speaking for myself I can still observe how it comes into being, or perhaps I’m deluded about such observations.
Perhaps it’s an illusion of skillfull means, you be the judge.

Far as I can tell, the sense of self is valid on the level of mind only, and the very observing of mind [nor the so called oberver, or sense of presence [being)] already proves this is not my self, this is not I, etc. So the self-reference can be observed as “not self” right? [don't mean observed, just a word tool]
Or as known in other schools as “neti neti” (non-verbal)
Though I agree we’re still talking on the level of duality, yet beingness, not being this or that.
When the mind is in abeyance, the totality of consciousness (or presence) remains,
Talking about the reflection of awareness in consciousness, not awareness itself.

still, this is better than not recognizing vexations at all. recognizing that we've been blown here or there is better than not. and definitely better than fooling oneself by convincing oneself that "vexations are bodhi, bodhi is vexations" or "i don't see duality." these are words of those who are fully enlightened only.

What do you mean with “duality?”
Clearly there are ‘times’ when "wholeness/every-each-"thing" is just as it is, neither dual or non-dual, [nor the arising notion of it]
clearly discerning between “things” without having the notion that perceived differences (name and form) “internal and external” are different in essence or substance, while knowing it is alike a dream, which neither arises, remains, or cessates.
How would you discriminate between this being an induced by a chemical consciousness “state” or a “genuine thingy”, what kind of intoxication could make about such self-deluded appiritions?

2) honesty, being honest to oneself in recognizing where one's at (along with diligent practice), has a direct impact on the subtle sense of self-reference. one will have humility and gratitude.

I don’t determine where I am at, I leave that to teachers and friends.
Also wouldn’t pin-pointing a stage of where one is at be a form of self-reference,
What am I else or the so called world [in this context] bot nothing then a collection of memories and habits? – easily discarded and seen for what it is.
Alike the 8 winds are nothing but states of mind, and the mind I am not.
What is not-self appears upon investigation, what is really our true nature [without the ‘our’]
Is a matter of Faith, and practising accordingly with diligence.
I fear that this conceptualizing might be misinterpretated as “as I see things”
it are not thoughts which arise outside of this forum [daily life], they are momentary and arise due to conditions [in this case due to talking with you] I only seek to understand, and see what is unseen.
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Guo Gu on Sun Jul 21, 2013 4:37 pm

:heya:
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Re: eight winds...

Postby fukasetsu on Mon Jul 22, 2013 3:52 am

Guo Gu wrote::heya:


Thank you for the demonstration [or marvelous fart in the darkness] kindly, Sir. :)

p.s.
Hakuin's "is that so?" is also a good story regarding the 8 winds.
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Guo Gu on Tue Jul 30, 2013 7:23 pm

here's another fun story, a "genjo koan" if you will, relevant for those who tend to try to find out the "source of things" and look for the "origin" of their vexations in others.

this one is contemporary, actually happened in wales, england.

once, after an intense retreat in the countryside of wales, my teacher and i were taking a stroll in the prairie with the person who invited us to lead the retreat in wales. i'll call him A. the three of us were walking quietly. suddenly...

A exclaimed: shifu, look, a pile of shit!!

my teacher looked.

A: i wonder where the horse is? (he started to look around...)

my teacher: what need is the horse when the shit is here, readily present?!

:lol2:

the word genjo in japanese or xiancheng in chinese has the meanings of: something already present, readily available, suchness, no need to do/make anything. vexations are such; wisdom is such.

i got angry today. then realized it was my own shit. :lol2: i was blown by the wind by surprise. how true that when we come across shit, we try to look elsewhere and pin the shit on others? :lol2:

granted, it's all words... but when we see "shit." it's always ours. if it's not, we would see "suchness."
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Re: eight winds...

Postby Guo Gu on Tue Jul 30, 2013 8:03 pm

:lol2: :lol2: :lol2:
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